In between safaris, you have the option of a guided visit to the Ranthambore Fort. This excursion does have a fairly steep climb with almost 300 stairs that are always surrounded by dozens of monkeys. The massive Fort is one of the finest examples of the ancient Hindu concept of Vana-Durg, or a fort protected by a jungle. The history of this Fort (built in 944 A.D.) is a chronicle full of tales of blood and valor. Successively occupied by the Muslims, Rajput’s and Mughals, the insides of the fort today lie partly in ruin. There are superb views of the park to be had from its ramparts. There is also an ancient temple located in the fort which attracts a continuous stream of pilgrims from the surrounding villages. A note of caution – a large number of aggressive langurs (a larger than average South Asian monkey) have made the Fort area their home and it is not advisable to have food or shiny objects visible as you tour the fort as such items will be aggressively snatched away and this could cause injury.
(Overnight – Aman-i-Khas – Luxury Tent)
Nov 2nd: Ranthambore – Jaipur. (Breakfast, Lunch and Royal Dinner) Enjoy your last private jeep safari into Ranthambore in the morning. Return to your resort after the safari to freshen up and have breakfast. You are assisted with your check-out from your resort by noon and we recommend you have at least a light lunch (this is included in the Aman’s pricing) before you are driven to Jaipur. Sawai Madhopur, the community located next to Ranthambore, is a rural small town, and you will drive through it to get a glimpse of life here before you head for the UNESCO World Heritage City of Jaipur.
Upon your arrival at Jaipur, you are assisted with your check-in at your boutique luxury palace hotel. Located in the heart of the city’s most prestigious area, with 47 acres of lush manicured greenery, your home in Jaipur is the awe-inspiring Rambagh Palace, the Maharaja’s former residence. You will stay in a Historical Suite and upgrade options to higher suite categories are available. The Palace is next to Jaipur’s finest golf course, the Rambagh Golf Course, and tee time and equipment can be arranged with prior request and an extension of you stay in Jaipur. There are Rajasthani cultural performances at your palace almost every night.
After checking in you will be presented with your bespoke Indian garments and whenever you are ready, today or on another day, the Palace Butlers will be happy to assist you in donning your new clothes – lady colleagues at the Palace will assist ladies with their clothing. Today is a good day to dress up as an Indian Royal as your dinner experience befits the apparel.
Royal Dinner Experience: Dinner will be at an incredibly charming and atmospheric venue this evening. The unique Steam Bar & Restaurant on the Rambagh Palace grounds is comprised of a lovingly restored 19th century narrow-gauge steam train and a recreated colonial era railway station – you can eat in the train compartments or on the authentic colonial era platform next to the train. You will select from a choice of wonderful multi-course set menus with delicious Jaipur and western cuisine options – your preferences will be required prior to this.
(Overnight – Rambagh Palace – Historical Suite)
Nov 3rd: Jaipur. (Breakfast and Lunch) Start your day after an early breakfast and you are driven to a very scenic rural location - https://www.deraamer.com/, the massive compound of Dera Amer. Enjoy a half day experience with the elephants at the camp – the two resident elephants enjoy their bath in the mornings, which is the reason behind your early breakfast. You can assist in bathing, feeding and applying decorative colors on their faces, or you can just watch as all these activities take place. After this experience you will enjoy lunch at the compound, and you can usually select between the dining room and an al-fresco option. There is also an option, if you are so inclined, to do a camel ride in the compound on their two resident camels – the nominal charge for this will be on a self-pay basis.
After lunch you will drive close by to the Amber Fort and Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This awe-inspiring complex was completed in 1599 AD after 25 years of construction. You will be driven to the back entrance of the main complex as Easy Tours does not offer elephant-back ascents up the ramparts of the complex because many of the elephants are not treated well. Please note that there are organizations that rescue and care for such elephants in camps in the Jaipur region and in many other parts of India. A half day elephant experience at such a center, with no riding, is an option that can be added to your Jaipur exploration upon request, potentially adding another night at Jaipur.
The massive Fort and Palace complex is one of India’s finest examples of Rajput architecture. Explore the chambers and hallways which are famous for their exquisite designs and handcrafted embellishments. Your Tour Director will regale you with the history of the various structures as you take in the amazing workmanship of the craftsmen who created them. From the Fort return to your gorgeous Palace Hotel.
Optional mid-afternoon activity: Jaipur is India’s shopping mecca for all sorts of exquisite hand-crafted items, fabrics, carpets, as well as jewelery, and those who are interested in shopping can have their Tour Director Guide serve as a personal shopper until the late afternoon, or you can choose to return to your spectacular palace hotel.
(Overnight – Rambagh Palace – Historical Suite)
Nov 4th: Jaipur. (Breakfast and Lunch) Begin your exploration of the walled pink city of Jaipur. You will start with a stroll through the fascinating main bazaar in the heart of the pink city and watch the locals as they shop for pretty much everything a consumer can possibly want. This atmospheric and crowded bazaar has street sellers of vegetables, fruit and other goods occupying the curbs with their displays. There are stores selling spices, nuts, flowers, toys, footwear, hardware, and a lot more, mixed in with street food vendors and brick and mortar eating establishments. Byzantine alleys lead into inner courtyard shops.
After a few minutes of walking, you will get a photo opportunity at the Hawa Mahal (Palace of the Wind).